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Good Question: What would expanding the NCAA tournament to 96 really mean?


The Duke Blue Devils were crowned the men's basketball national champion Monday night.

In order to do so they had to get through a field of 65, but if the NCAA has its way major changes could be coming to the tournament.

Good Question: What would expanding the NCAA tournament to 96 really mean?

Teams like Kentucky work all season long to hear their name called on Selection Sunday.

This year the Wildcats were selected a number one seed among a field of 65, but that could change in the future.

"The model that has been talked a great deal about is the 96 team model." said NCAA Vice President Greg Shaheen.

Shaheen says the tournament would be played in the same three week time frame, most likely enveloping the 32 team field from the NIT.

"Technically speaking it starts two days later than the current championship because it would eliminate the opening round game." said Shaheen.

Here's how it could work:

-There would still be four number one seeds.

-The top eight seeds per region would get a bye.

-In the first round 64 teams would play, with the winners moving on to take on the top eight seeds in each region.

What about tournament sites?

Would there need to be more of them or fewer?

"It would not require any more competition venues, in fact it would require one fewer in terms of what we normally operate with now." said Shaheen.

First round games could be played on campus, with second and third round games moving to neutral sites.

The last time the NCAA expanded the tournament was in 2001 adding the extra "play-in" game.

This latest expansion still has to be approved by the NCAA Committee.


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